I have long known that the folks involve in writing for kids are wonderful. As soon as I joined SCBWI, I found myself in the company of many generous, kind, funny, smart, supportive people. I've heard that it's different in adult publishing - more cutthroat. I don't know. But in kid lit, most people are just, well, nice. My agent, Tamar Rydzinski, more than proved it in all of her dealings with me - so fair, kind, perceptive, and intelligent.
This whole appreciation for the niceness/wonderfulness/general awesomeness of KidLitters rose to a new height this week after my first chat with my editor, Alicia. Not only was she Queen of Nice, she really really GOT my book.
Those of you who write alone in the dark, wondering if you're insane to try to be a writer will have a glimmer of understanding of just how wonderful this is. While you're typing/scribbling away, you secretly fear that no one will ever truly understand what you're going for on paper. And you secretly dream that at least one person will read it one day and go - aha!
The dream part of all that happened to me this week while talking to Alicia. She understood the whole subliminal body image issue I tried to sneak into my book. She loved that a group of friends plays a crucial role in the story. She "grokked" my world building, big time.
Can I just say - this is the way to my heart? Read my stuff, love it, get it, tell me all about it, and I'll love you forever. I'm easy like that.
Sure, she had notes. She'll have more. What notes she did have were so on the money it was scary. I can't wait to see her line edits. Seriously! There's nothing like taking a manuscript you love and making it better. It satisfies something way down deep in my soul.
So, future novelists/writer - I want you to know that editors rock. Yes yes, self publishing/epublishing are flourishing and more power to those self-propelled successes. But, for one, am so damned glad I have an editor. I want my book to be as good I can make it.